Appraisal management company under fire once again

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Brokers came forth to air various grievances with Nationwide Appraisal Services (NAS) after the appraisal management company gave an exclusive interview with MortgageBrokerNews.ca explaining its business practices.

“[Brokers] have had issues for a long time and we need to go to the lenders to put pressure on the appraisal services if we want things to change,” Kim Gibbons of Mortgage Intelligence told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “There are a lot of problems with delivery”

The recent article sparked a response from brokers who have had issues with the company in the past. Some of those issues were broached with Tom McCormick, president of president and CEO of The Nationwide Group, parent company of NAS, who would not delve into specifics.

“It’s really hard to respond to hearsay,” McCormick said. “Once the appraisal gets put into the system it is tracked thoroughly and brokers can always see the status, they’re always notified of any delays and once the appraisal is complete.”

However, Gibbons shared a specific complaint about one experience she had in August of 2013.

“[A] NAS appointed appraiser appraised one property at $915,000 and I had an approved appraiser appraised the same home at $1.3 million.”

According to Gibbons, that same home was appraised for $1 million in 2007.

“It doesn’t make sense for a home in Toronto to be appraised for less in 2007 than it was in 2013,” she said.

Still, according to McCormick, the company accepts broker feedback and even acts as a safeguard to protect brokers.

“The brokers that really like the system, they want to keep the separation between them and the appraisers,” McCormick told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “Heaven forbid that something goes wrong and they may look like they had something to do with it. Mortgage brokers generally like the fact that they can hand off a piece of their workload.”
 
  • Donna on 2015-05-12 10:27:34 AM

    I think Mr. McCormick is wrong. Most brokers want direct contact with the appraiser.

  • Michele on 2015-05-12 10:38:21 AM

    I definitely want direct contact with my appraisers. A NAS appraiser is paid less then a direct contact appraiser so they don't work as hard at getting a value. I have seen it and I will not deal with lenders who insist we use NAS

  • Broker on 2015-05-12 10:59:14 AM

    I don't know a single broker in our company that prefers any 3rd party appraisal management company in place of directly contacting an appraiser. If you feel you need separation between this, you are probably doing things incorrectly.

  • abby on 2015-05-12 11:39:22 AM

    Perfect answer Michele!!

  • Michele Hall on 2015-05-12 12:18:49 PM

    NAS has a lack of accountability are also charging additional fees to clients ... Lenders need to stop using insisting we use them

  • Michele Hall on 2015-05-12 12:19:59 PM

    I also have a specific file to verify the lack of service and accountability if they are still claiming this is hear say !

  • Michele on 2015-05-12 12:29:47 PM

    What do you expect the CEO of the NAS to say....he needs to keep his job. I have been in this business for over 30 years and have yet to meet a fellow broker who likes NAS. I also agree strongly with the broker who stated that anyone who want to separate themselves from the appraisal and NAS does that for them I sure wouldn't want to be their client.

  • Jay Meakin on 2015-05-12 12:31:50 PM

    I avoid using lenders that insist on Appraisal service. in my experience it Adds minimum 5 days to process and ZERO value to deal. No way to judge how long it will take and what it will cost. Appraisal services are a fail.

  • TJ Broker on 2015-05-12 12:35:04 PM

    I have never heard any broker say they prefer the NAS system. Total hassle, increased cost to borrower, less fee paid to appraiser, and no accountability by NAS... or difficult to discuss the report with the appraiser. I cringe every time I am forced to use them, IN fact, if we have the choice between 2 lenders, we'll choose the lender who does not insist on NAS/Brokerworx/ etc etc.

  • TJ Broker on 2015-05-12 12:36:07 PM

    I have never heard any broker say they prefer the NAS system. Total hassle, increased cost to borrower, less fee paid to appraiser, and no accountability by NAS... or difficult to discuss the report with the appraiser. I cringe every time I am forced to use them, In fact, if we have the choice between 2 lenders, we'll choose the lender who does not insist on NAS/Brokerworx/ etc etc.

  • Corey on 2015-05-12 12:42:07 PM

    On those specific deals I know ahead of time that will need an appraisal...I refuse to deal with those specific Lenders insisting to use NAS or SOLIDIFI. I cant be alone on this and those Lenders need to wake up as to how much potential business they are actually losing.
    #1a) my approved appraisers are on those lists anyway, why can I not go direct?! b) my approved appraisers refuse to bid on the job because they are paid almost 50 cents on the dollar for the same job...and that's terrible because I only align myself with the best appraisers with the best reputations and they pass on the business!
    ...and WORSE
    #2 some appraisal firm OUTSIDE of my Province bids on the job and THEN refers it out to some starving appraiser from some small community an hour outside my major market, takes days to set the appointment up and THEN has absolutely no feel for the market they are coming to appraise in.

    I've said it since day one, its nothing but a money grab, someone figured out how to make themselves a middle man on thousands and thousands of appraisals ordered across the country, selling fear to the Lenders that the Mortgage Broker will be in cahoots with the appraiser...that's REDICULOUS and a total insult to the men and women of our industry that adhere to the highest of standards!

  • Murray on 2015-05-12 12:47:31 PM

    How can i honestly use NAS or Solidifi and keep a straight face. I pride myself in customer service and as soon as I know i have to charge the client anywhere from $50 to $100 more for an appraisal. I lose contact with the process. I have to allow strangers contact my clients. I am now at a point that i do not need the nonsense with NAS and Solidifi. If i can avoid it, i will not use a lender that demands these extra fees.

  • Michele Hall on 2015-05-12 12:50:08 PM

    We all need to boycott lenders who insist we use NAS !!! if it is industry wide we can make a change !

  • Michele Hall on 2015-05-12 12:50:11 PM

    We all need to boycott lenders who insist we use NAS !!! if it is industry wide we can make a change !

  • Paul on 2015-05-12 1:46:43 PM

    I just ordered 2 appraisals for a client through NAS. The client paid (an inflated price in my opinion) for the appraisals with his credit card and then about a day later was contacted again asking for an additional $400! He was furious as you can imagine and felt like he was being extorted. What a terrible system.

  • Mel on 2015-05-12 1:49:40 PM

    Every single NAS appraisal I have had to do always comes back with a fee increase, every friggin time!! Makes us look like complete idiots. "Hey appraisal cost is $350, just kidding add another $50" Ridiculous

  • Michele Hall on 2015-05-12 2:13:08 PM

    @Mortgagebroker news how about following this up with Tom , also advising lenders somehow that this is going on ! Thanks

  • Michael Rice on 2015-05-12 2:36:50 PM

    What a bunch of garbage reporting! Using an article to bring to light a specific problem is nonsence. The real story is that some brokers want to use their "regular guy" to appraise their homes and that has been taken away from them. Lenders have the right to choose who they want to use to value their properties. When was the last time a broker was asked to buck up when a Lender had to write off a mortgage. As a broker in a shrinking market share I'd be more concerned about working with Lenders.

  • Michele Hall on 2015-05-12 2:59:34 PM

    wow , seriously !!!

  • James on 2015-05-12 5:18:29 PM

    @Michael Rice

    If your "regular guy" isn't on your lenders' approved list...how do you exactly use him for that lender?

    And why should a broker buck up for a write off that the lender CHOSE to approve given that all the information has been disclosed and have been vetted by the lender? Does it then mean brokers should get paid any gains the lenders book on securitization?

    The struggle with logic.

    The issue here is clear - AMCs provide zero value to the client/lender/broker.

  • Michael Rice on 2015-05-12 6:07:09 PM

    @ James
    Agree and disagree. Agree brokers shouldn't have to buck up on a foreclosure but it's all the more reason why Lenders want to control the valuation process. I also disagree AMC's don't provide value. We've been working with one for 5 years and have a great relationship with them, and our broker network who uses them. We do have some brokers that don't like the switch to AMC's, but the majority use them without any issues.

  • James on 2015-05-12 10:41:58 PM

    @Michael

    Lenders already control the valuation process; hence, they have a list of appraisers. To say otherwise, is not accurate.

    I've worked with AMCs since their inception; the business model isn't beneficial to the client that foots the bill.

    In good conscience, can you really honestly tell a client that a rush appraisal was worth $120 more when you could get the same thing done by the same appraiser without going thru the AMCs?

  • James on 2015-05-12 10:42:06 PM

    @Michael

    Lenders already control the valuation process; hence, they have a list of appraisers. To say otherwise, is not accurate.

    I've worked with AMCs since their inception; the business model isn't beneficial to the client that foots the bill.

    In good conscience, can you really honestly tell a client that a rush appraisal was worth $120 more when you could get the same thing done by the same appraiser without going thru the AMCs?

  • Dave on 2015-05-13 9:42:38 AM

    If an appraisal is needed on a deal, I will only use a lender that demands us to use one of these appraisal services if I have no other choice, I usually avoid them like the plague (National Bank and Street Capital I'm looking your way). These blind ordering services are basically forcing us to avoid using established reputable appraisal firms and go with some works from home lowest bidder. Horrible service, horrible idea, if lenders are nervous about fraud they should provide brokers with an approved appraiser list of reputable established firms and have a rule that states you cannot use the same appraiser twice in a row. Simple.

  • Appraiser on 2015-05-14 1:13:31 AM

    Very curious. What are the fees AMCs charge clients for appraisals, and what are the add-on fees?

  • Murray on 2015-05-14 1:27:39 PM

    @Appraiser. you tell us. i can order an appraisal direct from any of 3 of the regular appraisers in my area and m y client will $250 to $300 for the appraisal (plus tax). when i am forced to order through an AMC, the same appraiser will charge my clients anywhere from $75. to $150. more. as a broker i will work hard to save my client money, but AMC's cost more so i will NOT use a Lender that requires me to use an AMC. Plain and simple.

  • Just Jack on 2015-07-18 11:22:46 AM

    For BMO work the AMC bills $325. The appraiser receives $175. Then most appraisers will split the $175 fee with their employer. The appraiser gets $105 and pays all their own expenses.

  • Broker on 2015-09-02 1:37:15 PM

    Does anyone know how to reach NAS? I have been trying to get someone on the phone for 3 days now and their phone number has no way of being transferred to a live rep.

    I left messages on broker portal asking for someone to call me and no has returned my call... They also ignore my messages on the portal...

    How are we suppose to be professional when we are required to deal with a company like this?

    PS: This is lender mandated that I deal with them, not my personal choice.

  • Joyce on 2015-09-15 3:32:12 PM

    I am an appraiser who does no work for AMC's and have actually "ENJOYED" appraisal management firms--because we get a lot of business from lenders who are really upset with values/service etcetera that are prepared by AMC appraisers--particularly those that come from out of their own market to a market they do not know. Being a former lender, if you are dealing with a good appraiser, ordering the appraisal is not a "stressful" or onerous process like the AMC would like you to believe. As far as brokers influencing values with an appraiser, any appraiser who lets this happen risks a potential lawsuit, particularly when the market starts to slow down. We do no appraisal management work because their forms are ridiculous and very time consuming and because we do not have to be babysat and given time frames that are so short, mistakes are bound to happen.

  • Fank Pery on 2015-09-16 4:34:22 PM

    In the U. S. we can not even talk to the appraiser. I understand the stated reasons for the AMCs, however it punishes the honest LOs who are trying to protect their clients.

  • brandon on 2015-12-01 11:17:07 PM

    @Jay Meakin - appraisal services are a fail? Who's going to prevent an American style subprime collapse when lenders are sitting on unsecured mortgages, because they based their lending value on the home-owners obviously not biased guesstimates?

  • Scott on 2015-12-03 10:41:49 AM

    I do use any lenders that use these systems, they are always an absolute mess and they cause huge time delays. Cash grab, is all it is.

  • Underwriter on 2015-12-04 9:28:19 AM

    I don't believe that brokers should be able to contact, communicate, or use a preferred appraiser of there choice. I know that brokers gain from relationships with Appraisers and there is too much room for fraud. Lenders should mandate whom is to appraise. That being said, NAS and SOLIDIFY are horrible representatives for Appraisers. I say Underwriters keep control of the appraisal process.

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